I was going through my inbox the other day and saw a message from Equality California championing a bill that would require educators to include LGBT historical figures in their history curricula. Though I am generally supportive of any and all efforts to support LGBT rights, I couldn't help but think this bill is a bit misguided.
Part of the reason I think so is because for most of recorded history, it has not been acceptable to be queer and there are therefore few historical figures we can say were gay definitively. Most history classes feature not-very-recent history, so curriculums would have to go out of their way to find such figures, and some educators would resent it. I also don't think someone's sexuality is necessarily relevant to their life work. Being queer should be socially acceptable, and educators should make students feel that there is nothing wrong with being LGBT, but I don't think that this bill is the way to do it. Also, I don't think its likely to pass regardless of whether I support it or not due to homophobian politics .
Posts: 16 | From: California | Registered: Dec 2009
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I think the bill should instead be phrased as NOT specifically deciding not to include otherwise important historical figures simply BECAUSE they are LGBT.
As long as bills like this exist, it's still singling out LGBT as strange/abnormal. In my viewpoint at least, the only way to make it everyday and socially acceptable is to make it commonplace. They shouldn't be forced to go out of their way to find someone LGBT, but they shouldn't actively discriminate against them either. The best comparison I can come up with right now is forcing an english class to have books by black authors, or native american authors, because that class would then be "Ok, here's our token black author book, now let's get back to the regular people" rather than "Ok, here's this book." and the back blurb has a picture of the author, who happens to be black.
Posts: 173 | From: USA | Registered: Sep 2010
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